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Getting Scared

AnonymousUserAAnonymousUser Posts: 49,671
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:28 AM in Back Surgery and Neck Surgery
Well my surgery is all set up ACDF at C3-C6. I have to be at the surgery center at 12noon Thursday the 12th. The doctor's office is calling this an outpatient surgery. That concerns me because after my fusion on L5/S1 I ended up with a blood clot in there five days after surgery. I had to have the entire surgery again. I'm afraid if they send me home right away I wouldn't know if it happened again.
I'm also afraid of the recovery. I had good relief from the L5/S1 fusion after a couple weeks so I'm hoping I will get good relief from the ACDF. I'm just so scared that I will end up in worse pain and that would be horrible. Now my grandson is getting sick and my daughter will be the one taking care of me after surgery. So she will have to take care of a sick 7 month old and me. Guess which one will get the most attention, not that I could blame her. SO here's hoping I have easy recovery. Any advice to make after surgery easer I could use it.
Thanks all for being here for support.



  • March 6th was my fusion of the C4-C6 vertabrae. I feel far better than I should, I think. I've been up and moving around, I'm tired of sitting down. I haven't had any problems taking care of myself.
  • I know you're going to do great! I know you're nervous, surgery is a very scary thing. The good part is that they'll put you to sleep and the next thing you know you're waking up in your room. I think it's harder for those in the waiting room.

    Keep your chin up - you've been through a lot and I know you have the strength to get through this too.

  • i wanted to wish everyone goodluck on your upcoming surgeries. i hope everyone has a speedy recovery....take care...m
  • I know how you feel it's nerve rackinng no matter how often I've had any surgery. I think you'll be surprised how much different the recovery will be for the neck after having the low back done in the past.

    I think my advice to make it easier after surgery is to stay overnight. Pain Control will help If your insurance allows/approves a 23hr observation I think I would tell my doc I'd feel more comfortable w/an overnight and that my daughter won't be able to take care of me until the next day ;)

    If he still feels like a same day is adaquate it will ease your mind to discuss how he will help you manage the pain post-op and how you can get a hold of him if needed overnight. They will give you complete discharge instructions. I would just make sure you have all of your questions answered to your satisfaction & I'm sure either way it will be fine.

    I think clearly you and the doc will decide what is best and it doesn't hurt to ask if you prefer to stay at least overnight. I am just sharing my experiences only and making suggestions I'm not a doc I've just had alot of surgeries

    take care
  • I'm glad you are doing so well after your surgery. Do you have problems finding a way to lay down to sleep? I usually sleep on my stomach with my head turned to the side. I'm thinking I won't be able to sleep that way after surgery, so finding a way to sleep is a big issue to me. Any suggestions?
  • Thanks for your very kind words. You've responded to each of my posts with confidence boosting words and I really appreciate it. You're right I think my hubby and family have the hard part thursday. I see you had pretty much the same surgery I'm having just different levels. I'm hoping you are recovering well and that I will be able to encourage others on here, like you do, when I'm done with surgery too.
  • I've been sleeping in the recliner. :D

    You definitely won't be able to sleep that way. I'm not even going to try to lay flat at least for another 4 weeks.

    I tried laying flat while in the hospital and I started having a panic attack. :( I've never had problems like that before, nothing ever bothered me yet, now I can't get back into an MRI machine (claustraphobic) and the neck brace also gives me the same feeling when doing certain things like laying flat.
  • I agree I would feel better staying overnight. I will definately talk to my doc about it. I'm not sure if they even have overnight care at the Surgery Center where I'm having the surgery done but I will try. Thanks for the advice. :)
  • That's why we're here - spineys helping spineys.

    Here's the waiting room story hubby told me:

    In the pre-op room, my surgeon came in and told hubby and me that he would send his nurse to the waiting room to let him know that I'd made it through surgery and when he could come see me. Hubby, brother and sis-in-law were in this very large surgery waiting room that was packed with families. Every now and then, a nurse would come in to talk to a family. This went on for a few hours - always the nurse would come in. Then, after 3.5 hours, my hubby looks up and here comes my surgeon. "OMG - what HAPPENED?? Why is the surgeon coming in - why not the nurse - oh no!" my hubby thinks. He's scared to death and when the surgeon gets to him, the surgeon says, "Everything went fine. She came through beautifully. You can go see her now." :))(

    Just thought I'd share that. It cracked me up.
  • When I had my ACDF last fall, I was told it was out patient surgery. Confused on why I was staying overnight, I asked the nurse if something went wrong. She said that out patient surgery means you have to stay for 24 hours AFTER the surgery is completed. Anything after that is reported to your ins. company as in patient. So don't worry, I'm sure they won't send you out the door too soon.
    Good luck to you, and don't forget you have plenty of support here, if needed.
  • not to stir up anything but I think it just depends on the place and/or person. At my hospital where I worked we said outpatient and it was kind of the same as "same day" outpatient meant if all went well after surgery and monitoring was all good the doc has the option to send you home or keep you for 23hr observation, then yes after that you are considered an inpatient.

    Obviously same day means just that, that their intention is only to send you home. So I would just clarify with your doc what he plans or usually does for this outpatient surgery. If it sounded like he was sending you home then I would still tell him you want to stay either way. My guess is he will tell you he usually decides based on how one is doing. I think hopefully he'll tell you his intention was to keep you to make sure all is well w/your throat, pain control etc. then there will be no question/guessing you'll have a plan.

    I have always been approved for outpatient in case I needed to stay per the doc but also he would give me a choice at times. If it's something small like a tonsillectomy then no need for outpatient they will label it as same day as the insurance will not approve an overnight for that and if one needed to stay after it would only be emergent.

    so the bottom line no matter what the label is you will feel more at ease discussing your wishes. On that note I should have remembered that yes the insurance already approved an overnight.

    good luck
  • Well I talked to the nurse at the surgery center and got some relief from my nerves about going home too soon. I will be spending the night after surgery, will probably come home Friday. Everything is all set up. Surgery will be 1pm tomorrow.
    Thanks everyone for your encouragement. I really need all the encouragement I can get.
    I'm still freaked out that this surgery won't work and that I'll end up worse off but I'm putting it in God's hands now. The pastor from my church is going to come up and pray with me before surgery so I know I will be safe.
    Just hope I can sleep tonight.
    Thanks again everyone.
  • good luck and by the time you read this this you might be home hope all went well
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